A vegetarian pasta dish, rich in color that has a creamy consistency from the the roasted yellow pepper sauce. I added the baby squash to the dish as they looked so fresh and beautiful in the market, but any vegetable would work, if the squash is not available. I added a little parmesan on mine, but if you are going for the vegan version, just eliminate the cheese at the end. The crispy chickpeas are the perfect crunch with the creamy pasta. I recommend starting with dried chickpeas and boiling them yourself—it is a bit more time consuming, but worth the effort in my opinion. They have better flavor. I paired this meal with a crisp Sancerre…delicious!
- 1 lb favorite short pasta
- 3 yellow bell peppers
- 1 pint yellow tomatoes
- 1 medium sweet onion
- 3 cloves garlic
- 2 cups cooked chickpeas, drained and dry
- 6-8 cups baby zucchini, squash, split in half
- 4-6 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 2 teaspoons oregano
- 1 bunch fresh basil, torn, plus extra for serving
- 1/2 cup parmesan, plus extra for serving (optional)
- kosher salt and pepper
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- flour for dusting chickpeas
- vegetable oil for frying chickpeas
- 1 cup red cherry tomatoes, sliced in half for serving (optional)
for yellow pepper sauce:
Preheat oven to 400. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, cut peppers in half lengthwise and place cut side down on baking sheet. Roast for about 30-40 minutes, until skins are golden and charred. Remove from oven and wrap in parchment to enable skins to sweat off. Once cooled, peel skins off and any excess seeds and set aside. On a separate lined baking sheet, place onion, garlic and yellow tomatoes on baking sheet. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and drizzle with 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil and toss to combine. Roast for about 30 minutes until tomatoes are bursting and onions are charred and tender. Place all roasted peppers, tomatoes, onions and garlic along with all accumulated juices in the food processor and process until very smooth and creamy. Adjust seasonings to taste.
Boil chickpeas according to package directions and drain. Fill a medium skillet with about 1/4 of vegetable oil to medium-high. Lightly dust chickpeas with flour and once oil is hot, fry chick peas for abut 3 minutes until crispy and golden. Remove with a slotted spoon, and place a paper towel lined plate. Sprinkle with smoked paprika. Set aside until pasta is ready.
baby squash and pasta:
Leave oven on and line one of your baking sheets with a fresh piece of parchment. Toss the baby squash with salt pepper, garlic powder and oregano, along with 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil. Roast for about 15 minutes until tender and slightly golden. Remove from oven. Meanwhile, boil pasta according to package directions to al dente, reserving about a cup of cooking liquid. Drain pasta. Place roasted pepper sauce in the pasta pan and heat to low, to heat slightly. Add drained pasta and parmesan (if using) back to pot with sauce, stir to coat pasta with sauce. Add additional pasta liquid, as necessary to achieve desired consistency. Toss in basil and stir. Divide pasta in serving bowl or bowls, top with roasted squash, crispy chickpeas and garnish with red cherry tomatoes, extra basil and parmesan as desired. Enjoy immediately!